Members of the Dublin Kiwanis Club are staking out their favorite frog-collecting spots.

Members of the Dublin Kiwanis Club are staking out their favorite frog-collecting spots.

The group's annual frog jump and festival is set for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Coffman Park, 5200 Emerald Parkway.

About 500 frogs -- collected from area ponds and later returned -- are the stars of the event.

Kiwanis member Clay Rose said after years of collecting frogs for the frog jump, he has a few spots that never fail.

"We've been doing this for 40 some years," he said. "There are a lot of good golf courses in central Ohio that have a lot of ponds. But it's not just limited to golf courses. We have our spots."

The collected frogs are kept in tanks in a "super secret location" until the competition, Rose said. "They're well taken care of."

The frogs will be transported Saturday morning to Coffman Park, where 500 to 1,000 children will be waiting.

Competing in varying age groups, kids try to get their frog to jump out of the circle before their two or three competitors do.

The game hinges on one rule: competitors can't touch the frogs.

"There's a lot of yelling, whistling, blowing (and) pounding on the ground by the frog," Rose said.

Games occasionally end by bending the rules because the frogs don't always move.

"It's been fun to watch over the years," Rose said. "Some of the kids are absolutely horrified by the frogs, but mostly the kids react favorably. They're very good at encouraging frogs to jump."

The Kiwanis frog jump has become a community tradition; Rose said adults often approach him with stories of competing in the frog jump in their youth.

Some also try to stay involved when they're too old to compete, he said.

"One young girl coming in as a volunteer is too old to race anymore, but she's coming back as a volunteer to judge the kiddy races," he said. "It speaks volumes to me that we're touching people."

The frogs get top billing in Saturday's event, but Rose said other activities will be available.

"Last year we had sack races. We're trying to find those big hippity-hoppity balls so kids can have their own frog races. There will be inflatable (rides)," he said. "There's more than just frogs. Some of our sponsors will be there and will have tents with materials, but that's more for parents than kids."

Rose said proceeds from the frog jump will benefit the Dublin Food Pantry, the Diabetes Association and NAMI Ohio, an organization that deals with mental illnesses.

For information on the frog jump, look at dublinkiwanis.com.